Why Is Mitosis Important?

Ed Uthman/CC-BY 2.0

Mitosis is important because it is essential for growth and repair in the body. Mitosis happens when a parent cell divides, creating two identical copies, referred to as daughter cells. During this process, it is essential that the daughter cells are exactly the same with the same copies of DNA.

When people have injuries, such as a cut on their skin, mitosis allows the body to heal itself by creating new cells to replace the damaged ones. Mitosis isn’t just important for repair but for growth as well. Consider when a person grows taller: mitosis is important to this process because it creates new cells that will be needed for the growing body.

It is also important to understand that mitosis is a type of cell division, but the process of the cell dividing, itself, is referred to as cytokinesis. Like cytokinesis, mitosis has its own steps, and there are four of them. The DNA must be condensed so that it can be properly replicated, and this starts to happen during the first stage of mitosis, which is called prophase. During metaphase, the chromosomes are organized and during anaphase they split apart. After the DNA has successfully moved to the daughter cells, the final step, telophase, de-condenses the DNA back to its original form.